Lodhi Dynasty in India

Lodhi Dynasty: (1451-1526)

Lodhi Dynasty took control on Delhi after the defeat of Sayyid Dynasty. It ruled from 1451-1526.  Bahlul Lodhi was the founder of Lodhi dynasty.  Three important rulers of this dynasty are Bahlul Lodhi, Sikander Lodhi and Ibrahim Lodhi. This was the last dynasty of Delhi Sultanate and also it was called Pashtun dynasty.  Pashtun are Afghan people who belong to eastern Iranian ethnic group.  They are also known as Pathans.

Bahlul Lodhi: (1451-1489)

Bahlul Lodhi was the founder of  this Dynasty. He ruled from 1451-1489. He was an Afghan noble and a brave soldier. He tried to restore the glory of Delhi by conquering territories like Jaunpur, Rewail, Itawah, Mewar, and Gwalior. His most important conquest was Jaunpur.

Lodhi was a tactful ruler who won on Afghan nobles by giving them Jagirs. He treated them as friend. Bahlul Lodhi was an ardent Muslim follower. He offered his Namaz every day.  Bahlul Lodhi died in the year 1489 AD. After his death his son Sikander Lodhi ascended the throne.

Sikander Lodhi of Lodhi Dynasty

Sikander Lodhi succeeded his father and took over the reigns of this Dynasty. He ruled from 1489-1517 AD. Sikander Lodhi was the second son of Bahlul Lodhi.  Barbak Shah was his eldest son. He was the Viceroy of Jaunpur. Among the other two rulers, he was the most able ruler and good administrator. He maintained good law and order. Sikander Lodhi improved economy and the revenue of Lodhi dynasty.


Some of the important conquests during Sikander Lodhi period were, Sikander defeated his own brother in Jaunpur and took control on it. He later moved to Bihar, Dholpur, Gwalior, Bidar etc. He entered into friendly relations with Bengal. To effectively control and Administer Biyana, koil, Gwalior and Dholpur Sikander laid the foundation of a new city of Agra in 1503 AD and made it as his army headquarters.


He was a good administrator. He kept a check on nobles.  The governors were ordered to receive Sultan Firman(order). He also made it compulsory that governors should submit their account of income and expenditure. The offenders were severely punished.  Very often Sikander disguised himself to take first hand information about the condition of his people and state and also to know the activities of Amirs and Ulemas.  Sikander was very well versed scholar. He composed many poems in his language.  Sikander Lodhi encouraged education among children. In each mosque he appointed one scholar, one preacher and one teacher. It is believed that around 70 scholars discussed academic and religious problems every night. Several scholarly works were translated from Sanskrit into Persian.

Lodhi was a great patron of art, literature and music. He decorated the city of Agra with splendid and huge forts and buildings. The King enjoyed Shenai, a musical instrument. A musical note called Lahjat-I- Sikander shahi was composed during his reign.  Sikander Lodhi died in 1517AD. His youngest son Ibrahim Lodhi took control of the kingdom.

Ibrahim Lodhi of Lodhi Dynasty

Ibrahim Lodhi (1517-1526)

Ibrahim Lodhi son of Sikander ascended the throne of Lodhi dynasty after the death of Sikander Lodhi. He was the last ruler of Lodhi dynasty and Delhi Sultanate. After facing strong resistance from Afghan nobles, Ibrahim Lodhi restarted the dual system of governance. He handed over a part of the Kingdom to his younger brother Jalal Khan and made him Reuter of Jaunpur. But this did not lasts long, Ibrahim's men killed Jalal Khan and reclaimed Jaunpur. Ibrahim later decided to keep a check on the Afghan nobles. He insisted on strict observance of court ceremonial decorum by the Afghan nobility. Even Azam Humayun Sarwar contributed to the victory of Sultan over Gwalior.  But however Azam Humayun’s son Islam Khan revolted against Lodhi. Azam Humayun was arrested and the insurgents demanded strongly to release Azam Humayun but Ibrahim Lodhi refused to release him. It is assumed that Azam Humayun died in captivity is believed that he was killed under the orders of the Sultan.


While Ibrahim was busy fighting several Afghan nobles particularly Daulat Khan Lodhi, governor of Punjab and Alam Khan Lodhi, uncle of Ibrahim Lodhi invited Babur to invade Delhi. This was particularly done to take revenge on Ibrahim. Even though Ibrahim gave a strong and tough fight to Babur, Ibrahim was killed in the battlefield. This made the end of Lodi dynasty and Delhi Sultanate. This also is the beginning of Mughals rule in India